On my recent visit to St Helena I spent many hours in the archives in the basement of the Castle. Quite unexpectedly I came across this entry for Napoleon's funeral in the church records, presumably in the handwriting of the formidable if somewhat eccentric Rev. Boys. The records show that a number of other funerals took place on the surrounding days, among them those of a few soldiers.
The full entry for Napoleon's funeral reads:
Napoleon Buonaparte, late Emperor of France, he died on the 5th Instant at the old House at Longwood and was interred on Mr Richard Torbett's Estate
I was rather impressed with this. Any reference to Napoleon's imperial title was a major issue with Sir Hudson Lowe until the very end, and the British Government had never recognised Napoleon as Emperor of Elba, let alone of France. Only a few days earlier Lowe had refused the request that the simple inscription "Napoleon" should be carved on the tombstone.
Michel Martineau was less impressed than I. He tells me that Hudson Lowe's authority on St Helena ended with the burial of Napoleon. Even so, it would have been easy for Boys to have avoided any potential controversy by referring to the deceased by the officially approved title of "General Bonapart", and this he chose not to do.